Late Bloomer Carrick Felix Is Ready To Impress At NBA Draft Combine

Jason Wise

Arizona State's Carrick Felix developed into one of the Pac-12's premiere all-around players during his three years in Tempe, Arizona. Felix entered Division I basketball as a junior college transfer, then arguably became the Pac-12's best on-the-ball defender this past season. Now, the Pac-12 Scholar-Athlete of the Year will look to impress NBA executives at the NBA Draft Combine in Chicago.

Carrick Felix has come a long way since transferring to Arizona State from the College of Southern Idaho, and not only the basketball court. Felix recently earned his Master's Degree in Liberal Studies capping off a successful career in Tempe.

Felix now looks to take the next step in his basketball career, as he is prepared to showcase his talents, and highly praised athleticism to NBA GM's at the NBA Draft Combine. Felix won't be alone, Arizona State associate head coach, and former NBA head coach Eric Musselman will be accompanying him in Chicago. The combination of Felix's freakish physical qualities along with Musselman by his side, will help improve the 22-year-old's draft stock in the "Windy City."

Felix is not only a physical specimen tailored for NBA scouts' eyes, but his game appears to be NBA ready as well. Felix averaged 14.6 points, 8.1 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 1.4 steals, and 1.0 block in 35.3 minutes this past season. Felix also recorded 13 double-doubles which led the Pac-12, and notched 14 20-point games.

Defensively, Felix was outstanding for ASU this season. He quieted some of the league's top scorers including Cal's Allen Crabbe, Washington's C.J. Wilcox, and Washington State's Brock Motum. Felix was regarded as one of the best on-the-ball defenders in the Pac-12, and worthy of a spot on the Pac-12's All-Defensive Team.

Musselman spoke with RidiculousUpside.com, and described what makes Felix so special. "Carrick is a NBA talent, he is a NBA defender with NBA athleticism. He can defend multiple positions and is a great extra possession player. Offensively, he can really finish on the break, and is improving his parameter shot. He can be put in a NBA game today and help contribute as a role player. He has a great work ethic and was an unbelievable leader for us this past season. Due to his mentality of first player in and last to leave, he has gone from a college role player at ASU, to an NBA draft pick."

Felix's road to the NBA Draft combine began in Twin Falls, Idaho, where he spent a couple seasons including one as a medical red shirt at the College of Southern Idaho. Felix eventually got noticed, and even signed an offer to go play at Duke for legendary head coach Mike Krzyzewski, but ultimately chose to stay close to home and took a scholarship offer from Arizona State.

In his first two seasons at Arizona State, Felix progressed significantly as a player. During his first year, he averaged 4.6 points and 1.6 rebounds in 14.6 minutes. Felix improved upon those totals in his second year posting averages of 10.5 points and 4.0 rebounds in 33.0 minutes per game. However, this past season alongside the stellar play of Jahii Carson, Felix became an integral piece for the Sun Devils attack.

Felix is the definition of a late bloomer, but the 6'6'' versatile wing has NBA scouts wondering what his ceiling may ultimately be? Felix can defend, rebound well for his position, stroke the 3-point shot (37% this past season), and passes the ball well in offensive sets. His leaping ability allowed him to win 2nd place at the slam dunk contest during the Final Four. The main question regarding Felix is, what NBA team will be willing to invest in his future development?

Felix blossomed late in his career at Arizona State, but perhaps just in time to land somewhere in the first two rounds of the NBA Draft. Felix will likely have a productive showing at the NBA Draft Combine, and leave NBA General Managers salivating over his tremendous upside.

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